Within the bounds of Jewish law, creativity over the years has brought forth a wide range of sukkah huts for the observance of the Sukkot holiday. There are huts on flatbed trucks and those whose walls are canvas and wood and ply-glass.
And, for the last three years, a unique sukkah for those on the go.
Bet Shira Congregation (betshira.org) in Miami offers what it calls the “first and only” drive-through sukkah. It went up again last week in the shul’s parking lot, just beyond a speed bump.
“McBet Shira Sukkah” is the brainchild of Cantor Mark Kula.
The sukkah allows people to sit in their vehicles — observant Jews would consider this a violation of halacha — while they make the traditional blessing on sitting in a sukkah, on a lulav and etrog, and on a snack, all offered by a synagogue volunteer.
The sukkah is big enough for one car at a time.
“Several hundred people from throughout the community and across demographics come by a drive-through, experiencing a sukkah and connecting to the tradition,” Cantor Kula told The Jewish Week in an e-mail interview. “A motorcycle club added it to their route last year.”
“Most people are enthralled and intrigued by the concept,” the cantor said. “Cars are integral to our lifestyle. Why not link them to the sukkah?”
“There are so many excuses people have not to come or participate,” Bet Shira’s president, Martin Applebaum, told the Miami Herald. “We’ve come up with a way that you can be part of it during your normal activities.”
For those who come on foot, Cantor Kula said, “We also have our standard congregational sukkah.”